E Ink Launches 3rd-Gen Color E-Paper Posters For Outdoor Ad Applications

April 11, 2023 by Dave Haynes

E Ink has announced a new, third-generation of color ePaper displays tuned to outdoor digital out of home (DOOH) applications, suggesting the static but digitally updated posters are particularly well-suited to meeting energy conservations guidelines and regulations bubbling up in regions like Europe.

The new E Ink Kaleido 3 Outdoor is “based on print-color ePaper technology,” says PR, “and utilizes an RGB color filter array on black and white electronic paper film to create a warm and colorful display, offering 4,096 colors.”

“E Ink Kaleido 3 Outdoor offers vivid color image information and clear text, providing a comfortable and non-irritating color digital content viewing experience with a visual impact close to that of color printed paper signage. E Ink Kaleido 3 Outdoor’s operating temperature range is between -15°C to 65°C, which allows it to operate in extremely cold or hot areas without the need for expensive, high-energy-consuming heating or cooling devices, reducing additional power consumption.

E Ink says the product lines up nicely for media companies in European countries that are facing energy availability and pricing challenges, with new regulations being legislated that can limit the operating hours of digital signage.

E Ink argues its Kaleido 3 Outdoor “uses very little power, and can even run on renewable energy from solar panels, without relying on electricity from the grid. That means it can replace energy-hungry digital signage and conform to the new restrictions. When used for outdoor information displays, E Ink Kaleido 3 Outdoor color ePaper allows for quick and easy updates of information. It’s much more functional and environmentally friendly than traditional paper posters and display boards.”

The units range in size from 13.3 inches to 42 inches, which are on the small side and certainly not like-for-like replacements for the big high-brightness LCD displays used by media companies as sidewalk totems and bus shelter walls.

They do, however, have a teeny fraction of the energy needs of conventional LCDs used for DOOH applications.

The Taiwan-based manufacturer says it “compared the impact of 32-inch paper advertisements, LCD screens, and ePaper screens on carbon emissions for outdoor digital signage. If 100,000 ePaper signage operate for 20 hours a day, update their ads four times per hour, and last for five years, the use of ePaper signage is estimated to reduce CO2 emissions by 500,000 tons compared to LCD signage.”

“Compared to traditional paper posters that are printed once and disposed of, the use of ePaper signage can reduce CO2 emissions by about 4 million tons.”

Along with being smaller than conventional LCD displays used as ad posters, there is also a compromise on visuals. While E Ink has new indoor displays for retail that have a level of color saturation and depth that rivals LCDs and OLEDs, these outdoor units have a color filter. So the colors are muted – kinda like the posters have been out in the sun a long time and the colors have faded.

Creatives would have to work around that, and I don’t know if a brand could see its exact Pantone colors replicated. That might not matter for uses that are more about communicating information.

Leave a comment